Marketo Pros and Cons Reviewed by a Marketing Technologist
Edward Unthank | TrustRadius Reviewer
March 27, 2015

Marketo Pros and Cons Reviewed by a Marketing Technologist

Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Software Version

Global Enterprise

Modules Used

  • Marketo Lead Management
  • Marketo Sales Insight

Overall Satisfaction with Marketo Marketing Automation

As a marketing technology consulting company, Marketo is being used across our entire organization.

For our normal client, Marketo is used by a subset of the Marketing department, specifically Marketing Operations. It is used to extend the funnel higher up than the normal sales process, specifically with long sales-cycle clients with large B2B deal sizes. It's used for landing page creation and hosting, email marketing, leads for Sales to email and call upon, and marketing campaign success/reporting.
  • Marketo does a good job of integrating with SFDC specifically. The sync is seamless for normal database sizes, and it latches into SFDC's native campaign structure to offer relatively simple and straightforward reporting on campaign influence for revenue.
  • Once optimized, Marketo is good for rapid-fire content creation (emails, landing pages, and campaigns) that is tailored and optimized for digital marketing experiences. It can collect a broad range of data out-of-the-box which provides significant advantages compared to competitors.
  • Marketo's ability to scale, technically, can be a limiting factor at times. The major dependencies are lead database size, web traffic volume, and integration with the CRM. At the point of 750k+ leads, Marketo becomes slow to work with. At the point of 10k page visits/day, queues start to pop up on logging web activity. When lots of leads are begin updated in Marketo and through the CRM, the back-and-forth usage of API calls (by which Marketo communicates with CRMs) starts to max out, and you have to really optimize the setup in order to have timely communication between Marketo and the CRM.
  • Measurable ROI for campaign spend.
  • Challenger/champion setup of lead nurture, allowing for improved results over time as opposed to ad-hoc email campaigns.
  • Transitioning marketing departments to be more data-centric, as dashboards (with Marketo data building blocks) becomes the sources of truth and judgment of marketing campaign quality.
Pardot has a promise of native database sharing with SFDC, removing the largely limiting factor of API integrations between two siloed platforms (marketing automation platform and CRM), but this is not yet true. Pardot works for small companies who don't want to do anything complex with their marketing.
Eloqua is a contender for enterprise-level marketing automation platform, but its usability is less than Marketo. It's more made by engineers, made for engineers.
Hubspot isn't an actual contender, as it has different offerings which make a good case for one-person-marketing-teams for very small businesses.


If you've invested enough in your marketing automation platform, migrating to a new platform becomes a nearly-impossible task. You'll lost an enormous amount of information in your migration—you can basically plan to lose everything except for your lead database when you're looking to migrate. Marketing automation platforms in general are a very sticky product. If you were planning on changing marketing automation platforms, you should do so as quickly as possible before you're heavily invested in one specific platform.
For active lead databases below 750k, I would 100% recommend Marketo. For web traffic under 10k visits/day, Marketo is great. For companies with high visitor volume and high pages/session (around 100k page visits/day), it starts to get a little more complicated. If you have product integrations that are updating lead fields in either Marketo or your CRM, you have to be careful about how you build them, and make sure that you're optimizing API calls, and limiting noisy field updates.

For prototypical B2B companies (~9 month sales cycles, fewer leads, larger deal sizes), Marketo is a great choice.

Marketo Feature Ratings

WYSIWYG email editor
1
Dynamic content
7
Ability to test dynamic content
8
Landing pages
5
A/B testing
8
Mobile optimization
1
Email deliverability reporting
10
List management
10
Lead nurturing
10
Lead scoring and grading
10
Data quality management
9
Automated sales alerts and tasks
10
Calendaring
Not Rated
Event/webinar marketing
8
Social sharing and campaigns
2
Social profile integration
2
Dashboards
8
Standard reports
9
Custom reports
4
API
7
Role-based workflow & approvals
4
Customizability
10
Integration with Salesforce.com
10
Integration with Microsoft Dynamics CRM
6
Integration with SugarCRM
Not Rated